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CALDWELL'S WWE SUMMERSLAM PPV RESULTS 8/14: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of live PPV - Cena vs. Punk title unification

Aug 14, 2011 - 9:50:06 PM
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WWE Summerslam PPV Results
August 14, 2011
Live from Los Angeles, Calif.
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor


Similar to WrestleMania 27, the PPV started live in the arena before a video package introduced the show. Ring announcer Justin Roberts introduced Adam Jones from "Tool" on-stage to perform the U.S. National Anthem. After Jones's guitar version of the anthem, they cut to a standard WWE PPV introduction video focusing on Summerslam in Los Angeles. The video then transitioned to focus on Cena-Punk with Triple H as special referee in the main event tonight.

Arena: The voice-over man introduced the 24th annual Summerslam before they cut to the arena for a full pyro display. Michael Cole introduced the show and said this is a night that will "change WWE forever."

In-ring: The Miz's music hit to open the show, causing Cole to nearly jump out of his chair. Miz walked through the same WM27 bubble letter gimmick on the stage as Justin Roberts introduced a six-man tag match of sorts to start the show. Booker T is on commentary with Cole. In the ring, Miz took the mic and proclaimed he is the most must-see WWE champion of all-time and has returned to Summerslam. Miz said he would like to thank each and every one of them for insisting he compete tonight. For the audience's unwavering support, he wants them to sit back and watch him steal the show.

Suddenly, R-Truth's intro interrupted. Truth slowly walked out on-stage and told Miz he shouldn't be thanking the people here in Los Angeles. He said he hates spiders, which starts with the letter "s." Truth said Summerslam also starts with an "s." He transitioned into Cee Le Green also starting with the letter "c," like conspiracy. Alberto Del Rio's music hit and Jerry Lawler's voice was heard. So, no Jim Ross on commentary? Ricardo Rodriguez introduced Del Rio, who slowly made his way to the ring as WWE offered some new camera angles during his introduction.

Kofi Kingston was out first for the babyface trio. Kingston debuted new wrestling shorts, replacing his standard trunks. John Morrison, from Los Angeles, was out next. Rounding out the field was Rey Mysterio, who will be receiving a WWE Title shot tomorrow night on Raw. Mysterio was limping ever so slightly to barely sell Miz's beat down on Raw six nights ago.

1 -- THE MIZ & R-TRUTH & ALBERTO DEL RIO vs. REY MYSTERIO & JOHN MORRISON & KOFI KINGSTON -- six-man tag match

The dreaded Cole/Lawler/Booker three-headed announcing trio was horrendous to start this match, which seemed like a house show main event with wrestlers getting in signature spots early on without a sense of this match meaning anything. "Back to the action!" Booker declared at 2:30 with Truth and Morrison in the middle of a headlock. Awful. Booker then randomly focused on Miz's ring jacket ten minutes after Miz's ring entrance. Del Rio, who was popular with the live crowd in Los Angeles, broke up a pin attempt by Kingston on Miz, then the action broke down. The heels eventually isolated Kofi and worked him over for a few minutes as the announcers discussed why George Lopez's show was canceled.

Mysterio eventually hot-tagged in at 8:30 and delivered signature offense on Truth. Booker suddenly interjected a Soul Train reference out of nowhere. Rey set up a double 619 on Truth and Miz, but Del Rio grabbed his foot from the outside. This set up a series of high-flying moves with the faces clearing the heels on the floor. Rey then splashed R-Truth in the ring for the pin and the win. For the first time in nine minutes, Cole got serious and said Rey proved he's ready for the #1 contender match on Raw tomorrow night.

WINNERS: Team Rey at 9:35. This is going to be a long night having to listen to Cole, Lawler, and Booker. Just awful. The match itself was inconsequential until they got around to focusing on Rey ahead of his title match tomorrow night. (**)

Backstage: C.M. Punk was standing by as John Laurinaitis talked to him. I have no idea what Laurinaitis said because his voice is so raspy that it's impossible to hear what he's saying. Basically, Ace wanted an apology. Punk subtly cleared his throat before mock apologizing to him. Ace, satisfied enough, walked off before Stephanie McMahon walked into the shot for her inevitable return. Stephanie said she came to wish him luck. Punk told Stephanie to run along and talk to her husband. She told Stephanie to go talk to daddy, too, since he doesn't run day-to-day operations anymore, but is still Chairman of the Board. Stephanie said she spoke to Vince and Hunter, who also wished him luck. Steph sarcastically said she's just an idiot, right? Punk said that's what she said, but he called her clueless. Stephanie extended her hand, but Punk said he knows where that hand has been. Off he went as Steph smirked.

Video package: They aired a video on Mark Henry's path of destruction before Henry came out for the next match on the show. Sheamus was out next to a good babyface reaction. Not great, but good.

2 -- MARK HENRY vs. SHEAMUS

Cole spent a good minute trying to present an illogical argument that Henry is not a bully due to picking on people his size. Booker eventually got around to noting Henry injured wrestlers after winning matches and picked on a production worker. Cole said, okay, maybe he is a bully. Henry dominated early on as Sheamus sold on the mat. Sheamus eventually knocked Henry off his feet with a big Polish Hammer blow to the chest. Sheamus followed with big overhand blows to the chest before they collided mid-ring and both fell to the mat. Sheamus was the first one up and made his way to the top rope for a leaping shoulder tackle, which resulted in a two count.

Sheamus did a classic babyface spot telegraphing his finishing move and Henry avoided the Brogue Kick. Moments later, Sheamus reset and Brogue Kick'ed Henry to the floor. The match moved to the outside and Henry smashed Sheamus through the gimmicked ringside barricade. Some plants on the front rows over-reacted. In the group appeared to be Joey Ryan, Scorpio Sky, and some other SoCal independent wrestlers. Henry returned to the ring as the plants tried to encourage Sheamus to crawl back into the ring, but Sheamus was counted out, giving Henry the win.

WINNER: Henry via count-out at 9:24. The right finish to keep this going with Sheamus still on the chase, but not losing too much with a count-out loss, while keeping Henry strong. (**)

Backstage: Josh Mathews brought in World Hvt. champion Christian to discuss his little surprise for Randy Orton tonight. Christian said he can guarantee Orton will not leave as World champion. He said he has a little insurance policy. Christian said tonight's match will be full of action like a summer blockbuster movie here in Hollywood. He said Orton will be like Cowboys & Aliens - an over-produced, over-rated, fraud.

[Commercial Break? A commercial trailer in the middle of a PPV advertised "Killer Elite." At least it had some big-name action movie stars so it didn't look like one of those C-Level movies typically advertised over and over during every Raw commercial break.]

Stage: Justin Roberts introduced Cee Lo Green to perform his musical set on the ring entrance stage. After performing the Summerslam theme, Green brought a handful of Divas on-stage to be background dancers for his next song.

[Commercial Break. Another commercial aired, this time for Slim Jim. Then, another for 7-Eleven. These types of things kill goodwill for PPV buyers spending $45 or $55 for an event.]

In-ring: From 15 minutes of filler to the Divas Title match. Out first was Divas champion Kelly Kelly, accompanied by Eve. Beth Phoenix was out next, accompanied by fellow Diva of Destruction, Natayla.

3 -- Divas champion KELLY KELLY (w/Eve) vs. BETH PHOENIX (w/Natalya) -- Divas Title match

The match quickly moved to the floor, with Kelly landed a flying splash to give Beth something to think about in the size-advantage heel vs. underdog babyface match-up. Back in the ring, Beth took control of the match. She tried to force a submission with a standing shoulder breaker-like maneuver, but Kelly wouldn't quit. For the finish, Beth went for the Glam Slam, but Kelly rolled through into a quick pin for the win. Kelly and Eve quickly bailed from the ring to celebrate. Beth huffed and puffed while Natalya tried to calm her down to let her know she'll get Kelly eventually.

WINNER: Kelly at 6:32 to retain the Divas Title.

Backstage: Stephanie McMahon was shown eavesdropping on something in the hallway. She walked off and the camera showed she was standing outside John Cena's locker room.

Backstage: R-Truth was telling someone about his conspiracy theory. The camera panned right to reveal Jimmy Hart. He said Truth needs someone to take him to the top. Hart said he managed HTM, Money, Inc., and Hart Foundation - he can take Truth to the top. Truth said he gets; Jimmy can take him to the top. Truth suddenly snapped, figuring he was Little Jimmy all along. Truth ran him off, then asked someone else off-camera what he was looking at. The camera panned left to reveal Lakers star Ron Artest, who just shook his head.

[Commercial Break. Now a Twix commercial. If this is WWE's way of admitting their booking is a total mess and they can't reverse the trend of declining PPV buys by fixing their creative so they're trying to get ad revenue on top of PPV buys, then they need to cut the PPV price drastically. It's the same short-sighted decision-making that goes into raising the ticket prices at the top-level, trying to squeeze even more dollars out of their most loyal customers rather than rewarding them for their loyalty. That's WWE in a nutshell.]

In-ring: Wade Barrett walked out on-stage for the next match on the show. Daniel Bryan came out to his new music that generated zero reaction before they replayed recent moments from the Bryan-Barrett feud.

4 -- DANIEL BRYAN vs. WADE BARRETT

The match started with the announcers discussing Bryan's vegan lifestyle. Cole heeled on him, saying he believes Bryan should eat a meal once in a while. Bryan stretched Barrett with a variety of holds early on as Cole confused Bryan and Barrett several times. Barrett eventually took control countering a whip to the ropes into a Blackhole Slam for a nearfall. Barrett then went to the mat looking to stretch Bryan, who fought back with a knee strike against the ropes. On the floor, Bryan landed a running knee strike to the jaw that knocked Barrett on his back.

Back in the ring, Bryan went up top for a double-foot dropkick that resulted in a two count. The two men went back and forth before Bryan slapped on a frontface submission that he transitioned into a LeBell Lock. Barrett teased tapping out, but reached the bottom rope for a break. The action moved up top and Barrett crotched Bryan before landing a flying clothesline. Center-ring, Barrett delivered Wasteland and it was good for the win. Cole called it a 50/50 match that was a stalemate throughout. Lawler was speechless at Cole giving Bryan credit. They went to a replay of Barrett in trouble during the LeBell Lock before Barrett came back for the win.

WINNER: Barrett at 11:47. After an hour to forget, a nice match to get this PPV on track for the first time in the night. Barrett looked good, picking up a much-needed win. As for Bryan, it was the best-case scenario for a loss: looking good in defeat after a solid match. Despite Bryan holding the MITB briefcase, WWE simply doesn't see Bryan above Barrett's level, so the outcome was inevitable. (**1/2)

Ringside: Local National Guard personnel were honored before they cut to the announcers to promote WWE's reach to the military.

In-ring: Christian was out first for the World Title match. The announcers noted Christian looked very confident despite being up against a crazed Randy Orton with the advantage in Orton's corner. Cole said Christian could be bluffing on his "insurance policy," though. Before Orton came out, Christian took the mic and said he could not wait for this moment. He said that unlike Orton, Triple H, or Teddy Long, he is a man of integrity. So, without further ado, welcome the man in his corner tonight...his best friend (pop)...the Rated-R Superstar, Edge (bigger pop). Pause. "You Think You Know Me" hit to a big reaction as Edge came out on-stage sporting shorter hair and aviators, almost looking like Chris Jericho. Edge slid into the ring as Lawler noted this has changed the complexion of the title match. Edge and Christian hugged in the ring as Cole recapped Edge having to retire earlier this year.

As Edge's music stopped, he asked for the mic as the crowd cheered. Edge said that was a lot of fun. Almost breathless, Edge said the WWE doctors have told him he will never be physically cleared to wrestle again. Edge said he was happy, though, because he was part of passing the torch to Christian. Maybe he opened the door a crack as Christian finally became World Hvt. champion. Here's the thing: he thought it was unfair Long made Christian defend the World Title five days after winning. But, then, Christian started complaining about it every week for months. He said Christian finally won back the World Title, but he did it via a DQ win. Edge said he's done his share of heinous, terrible things here, but he always did it with style. Edge said he wasn't boring and didn't hide behind lawyers or suits. Edge rubbed his head and said somewhere along the line, Christian became a disgrace to himself. He told Christian he's better than that and it's coming from his best friend. Edge said he didn't think his best friend would become a whining, crying, little bitch. Edge threw the mic down and left the ring as Christian called out to him to come back. Christian threw a fit in the ring before Orton's music hit to a big reaction. Orton had a big smile on his face as he slowly walked out to the ring ready for a piece of Christian. Tony Chimel handled the formal ring introductions before the bell sounded to begin the title match.

5 -- World Hvt. champion CHRISTIAN (w/out Edge) vs. RANDY ORTON -- World Title match -- No Holds Barred

Christian tried to run away early on, but Orton chased him down in the crowd and threw him back into the ring. Orton blasted away on Christian with right hand blows, but Christian rammed Orton shoulder-first into the ringpost to steal control away from Orton. The crowd was split in their support of Christian and Orton, of note. Christian retrieved a kendo stick from under the ring and used it as a weapon, trying to get Orton to give up.

Orton suddenly scored a two-and-nine-tenths count on a roll-up out of the corner when Christian nearly didn't kick out in time. Christian quickly cut off Orton, though, and went back to the kendo stick. However, Orton intercepted a kendo stick blow from the second rope with a mid-air dropkick. Orton, with a bloody mouth, and Christian then exchanged offense as the crowd ate it up. Orton suddenly got that look in his eyes and wanted The Punt, but Christian slipped to the floor. On the outside, Orton dropped Christian on the ring steps to daze the champion. Orton was the next to search under the ring for some weapons. Orton found two tables to his liking and slid one table into the ring.

On the ring apron, Orton took Christian up top and super-plexed Christian off the top turnbuckle onto the flat table center-ring. Orton made a cover, but the champ kicked out. Orton then set up the table in the corner and flashed a big smile to the crowd. Christian blocked a table whip, though, and delivered a reverse DDT. Christian then crouched in the corner for Edge's Spear, but Orton avoided, then Christian blocked the RKO, and Christian dumped Orton over the top rope. Orton whipped Christian into the ring steps, though, to cut off Christian's momentum.

At 15:00, Orton picked up the ring steps and Christian reversed a whip into the ring steps. More counters and reversals. Christian then placed Orton on the Spanish announce table and mocked his viper-like stance. Christian tried to follow with an RKO, but Orton blocked and sent Christian through the table with an RKO. After a pause to sell the spot, both men crawled back into the ring. Suddenly, Christian dropped Orton with the Unprettier, but Orton kicked out in time, which popped the crowd. Nice pacing going up, down, up from the RKO to the Unprettier. Christian then went to the outside to retrieve two chairs to bring into the ring. Christian measured Orton for the Conchairto and spit down on Orton's face before missing with a chair shot. Orton then got up, took the other chair, and cracked it over Christian's back. Orton followed with a chair jab that sent Christian flying off the ring apron through the second table positioned ringside.

On the floor at 20:30, Orton slid the ring steps into the ring before going under the ring to throw numerous weapons inside the ring. Orton rolled Christian back into the ring and stalked Christian for his next move. Christian avoided a stomp on the steps, but ate a powerslam through the table propped up in the corner. Orton clutched his left wrist to suggest a potential injury before grabbing the kendo stick to crack over Christian's back. Orton then positioned a trashcan near the ropes to deliver his trademark spike DDT into the can. Orton, with blood splattered on his body, measured Christian for the RKO, but Christian popped him with a kendo stick out of nowhere. Christian then tried a sunset flip move, but Orton intercepted him with a mid-air RKO, just like their first PPV title encounter a few months ago, this time into the ring steps. Orton clutched his head, then slowly covered Christian to become World Hvt. champion again. Post-match: Orton celebrated with the World Title belt in the corner as Christian was dragged out of the ring to sell the effects.

WINNER: Orton at 23:42 to capture the World Hvt. Title. A strong PPV title match in their series of strong PPV title matches, using the weapons-match formula effectively. WWE suggested on the pre-show that this is the last encounter between Orton and Christian, so it remains to be seen where they go from here. (****)

Summerslam Axxess recap: WWE ran a WrestleMania Week-style video package recapping all of the wrestlers in Los Angeles during the week, various mainstream media appearances, and soundbytes from mainstream stars.

Backstage: A camera "snuck up on" referee Triple H and Stephanie McMahon having a conversation in the hallway. Hunter seemed to be a bit displeased by the conversation and walked off, leaving Stephanie to ponder what was to happen in the main event.

MITB video package: They replayed the NFL Films-style recap video from Raw focusing on the Cena-Punk feud starting with MITB and leading to Summerslam tonight.

Ringside: They focused on Jenny McCarthy sitting ringside. Triple H's music then played to bring out the special referee for the WWE Title main event. After a pause, C.M. Punk's Cult of Personality played to a big reaction to bring out the original WWE champion. Booker slipped in a not-so-subtle Steve Austin reference, saying Punk is "stone cold bad." In the ring, Punk posed in the ring for the crowd, in front of Hunter, and back in front of the crowd. Once Punk's music stopped, there was a loud "boooooooo" in the crowd. It seemed to be in anticipation of Cena's theme playing, which was met with a loud mixed reaction after the Cena Pause. Cena walked out on-stage and said something about hearing the same reaction when he walked the concourse earlier tonight. Cena then stomped to the ring and gazed into the face of his new WWE Title belt. Cole transitioned to a plug for Night of Champions, wondering which of these two men will be defending the WWE Title next time WWE is on PPV.

During the formal ring intros, Punk was audibly cheered, drowning out any boos. Cena was heavily booed, but the Cena Fans came to life after his intro. Triple H then took both title belts and hoisted them up in the air. Hunter gave both men a TSA pat down to check for foreign objects, then emphatically called for the bell.

6 -- WWE champion C.M. PUNK vs. WWE champion JOHN CENA -- WWE Title unification match -- Triple H special referee

Early feeling out process before the two champions paused for a loud dueling chant. Regarding Hunter's role, Cole said some believe there's a conflict of interest with Hunter playing "cop and judge." More feeling out process as the two men traded technical holds and one-counts. Punk with the first sustained offense of the match that led to a dropkick off the ring apron that sent Cena to the floor. Hunter applied a ten count and Cena re-entered at five. Cena came back with sustained offense, but Punk intercepted a classic shoulder tackle with a mid-air knee lift for a two count.

Punk and Cena started countering each other's signature sequences, then Cena did the You Can't See Me wave that Punk blocked before delivering an STO into a neck vice submission. Cena fought it off, then countered into an STF. Punk countered into a keylock submission for a few moments that Cena suddenly countered into an STF. Punk made the bottom rope with his foot, though, creating a break. Nice sequence there.

At 13:40, Punk dumped Cena over the top rope to the floor and Hunter began his count. Punk then launched himself through the ropes with a suicide dive that sent both men into the guardrail. Hunter started his count again and reached nine, then decided to stop counting. He threw Cena into the ring, then threw Punk into the ring. Hunter shouted down that he wants a winner and for them to fight. The two men came to their feet at the same time and started trading bombs. Cena suddenly delivered a dropkick and dropped the Shuffle to Punk. Cena wanted the Attitude Adjustment, but Punk countered. They started trading pin attempts before Punk delivered a sweeping leg kick for a nearfall.

At 17:30, Punk teased the G2S, but Cena blocked. Cena then delivered a modified powerslam for a two count. Booker said Cena is the real deal, which Lawler echoed for Punk. Cena then went up top looking for a high-risk move, but Punk blocked with a high knee to the jaw. Suddenly, the PPV froze with Punk perched up top. About five seconds later, Cena kicked out of a pin attempt. Punk then tried a springboard move, but Cena countered with the STF. Punk screamed as Hunter checked on whether he wanted to tap. Punk made it to the bottom rope moments later and Cena was forced to break.

At 20:15, the two men traded finishing teases before Cena delivered the AA, but Punk kicked out in time. The camera zoomed in tight on Cena selling disbelief. Cena continued to look down at the mat before smiling and asking Hunter about his count. Cena, not quite satisfied, went to the top rope and missed with a guillotine leg drop. As Cena sold a leg injury, Punk followed right up with the G2S. Punk made a cover, but Cena kicked out just before three. The crowd didn't pop huge for the nearfall, as it was an expected tit-for-tat finisher kickout sequence.

At 22:30, Punk slowly slipped to the apron and climbed up top. Punk wanted a top-rope Macho Man elbow drop and connected as Cena tried to move. Cena kicked out of a pin attempt, though, which brought the big eyes from Punk. "Randy Savage" chant from the crowd as Hunter and Punk exchanged words. Suddenly, Cena rolled up Punk, but only scored a nearfall. Punk then kicked Cena in the gut and Cena came back with some emphatic kicks and strikes. Punk came back with his own sequence of emphatic strikes before delivering another G2S. Punk made the cover, but Cena had his foot on the rope at one. Still there at two. Hunter still didn't see it and Punk scored a three count. Cole screamed that Cena's foot was on the ropes as Punk took his title belt.

Post-match: Cena tried to tell Hunter he blew the call before leaving the ring. Hunter shrugged his shoulders as they cut to a shot of Punk celebrating on the announce table. Booker said it's what he called for: one mistake would cost someone in this match. Punk paraded around the ring while Hunter stood in the ring. Lawler said he thought this match would come down to a mistake from either Punk or Cena, but it was a mistake by Hunter. Punk then slipped into the ring and Hunter extended his hand for a shake. Punk ignored it, so Hunter held his hand in the air. The crowd was mixed, expecting something else to happen here. Hunter then left the ring as Punk celebrated in the ring. Suddenly, there was noise in the background. And, suddenly, Kevin Nash was in the ring. Nash smashed Punk with a clothesline, then dropped him with a Jackknife Powerbomb. They cut to Hunter stunned on the entrance ramp. Hunter then walked down to the ring as Nash bailed through the crowd, not looking at Hunter.

WINNER: Punk at 24:10 to become Undisputed WWE champion. Another excellent back-and-forth between these two top stars. Not long enough to be at the level of MITB, but another four-star-plus effort. (****1/4)

Suddenly, Alberto Del Rio's music hit and Del Rio stormed the ring with a new referee. Hunter was walking around, still stunned by what happened with Nash.

7 -- WWE champion C.M. PUNK vs. ALBERTO DEL RIO -- WWE Title match

The bell sounded to make this official. Booker: "I don't believe this." Hunter was stunned, seeing his entire regime falling apart before him. Del Rio hit a step-up enziguiri, then made a cover and he's the new WWE champion. You could kind of see this on Raw when Punk got the win on Del Rio, then Del Rio would cash in, and now they're 1-1. Hunter talked to the referee, still shocked over what happened. Del Rio left up the entrance ramp as Lawler asked what Kevin Nash (not Diesel) was doing here. Del Rio was shown celebrating on the stage as the announcers tried to figure out what just happened. Del Rio was shown celebrating on the stage to conclude the show at 10:50.

WINNER: Del Rio at 0:06 to capture the WWE Title. Del Rio isn't over right now as a main-eventer, but what has become routine for WWE is to put a top title on a mid-card to upper-mid-card heel to "legitimize him" in the eyes of the audience. Where this storyline could be going is Nash was Stephanie and/or Vince's hired "back-up plan" to ensure the title did not stay with Punk if he were to win the match over Cena. This time, Vince's attempt to have Del Rio cash in against Punk at MITB would work after Nash softened him up.

***

James Caldwell and PWTorch columnist Greg Parks will be hosting a post-PPV Livecast starting at 11:30 p.m. EST with live calls on the PPV. Join the discussion at BlogTalkRadio.com (URL -http://tinyurl.com/3nuqhcu).

We welcome your 0-10 score and comments on this show for a "WWE PPV Reax" feature in the Torch Feedback section of PWTorch.com. To contribute your thoughts on the PPV, click here.


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